Glitch in Sprint’s GPS service points Find My iPhone users to innocent man’s house

find my iphone

Imagine you are awoken in the middle of the night by someone pounding loudly at your door. It’s a man and his girlfriend, and they’re upset because someone just stole her iPhone, and the Find My iPhone app led them straight to your house. Now imagine this is a regular occurrence.

Unfortunately for Wayne Dobson, he doesn’t have to imagine. Due to a glitch in Sprint’s location-tracking services, phone finding apps have been sending owners of missing iPhones and other handsets, as well as police, to Dobson’s home in North Las Vegas for the past two years…

The Las Vegas Review-Journal (via The Verge) reports:

“In the past two years the 59-year-old retiree has been pestered by people showing up at all hours of the day and night at his house, demanding their phones. They’ve yelled, shown him evidence, called the police – sworn that their phone is in his house…

…The problem appears to be limited to some owners of Sprint phones. Company officials said they are researching the problem, which has forced Dobson to sleep near his front door on weekends so he can answer the door quickly at all hours.

“It’s a hell of a problem,” he said. “It would be nice to be able to get a good night’s sleep.”

Dobson’s problems all began in 2011, when a couple knocked on his door around midnight one weekend. They were convinced that he had taken their phone, having been led directly to his house by their phone-finder app. But the 59-year-old had no idea what they were talking about.

The couple left without their phone, and he never heard from them again. But it wasn’t long before he realized he had a bigger problem on his hands. He has caught people in his backyard, looking in his window, and banging on his door — many of whom, as you’d guess, are pretty mad.

Dobson says he has contacted Sprint about the issue, and they say they’re working on it. But they have yet to determine the cause of the problem.